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John Baron MP blasts latest Army Reserve recruitment figures
MP says recruitment failures are disastrous
John Baron MP has opposed Government plans to replace 20,000 Regulars with 30,000 Reservists, fearing such plans will create unacceptable capability gaps and false economies. The MoD is having severe trouble recruiting Reservists and is throwing more money at the problem. This has so far included doubling the £5,000 incentive for ex-Regulars to sign up, introducing a £300 incentive for civilians to join up, and pension changes.
The MoD has published its quarterly recruitment figures, which reveal that the number Army Reserve recruits (formally the Territorial Army) has fallen from 19,400 to 19,290 over the same period.
“These reserve recruitment figures are disastrous. Despite an expensive and high-profile advertising campaign, the Army Reserve is 110 soldiers smaller than in April.”
“Those of us who oppose the MoD’s plans to replace 20,000 Regulars with 30,000 Reservists believe they will lead to capability gaps and false economies. A recent report from the National Audit Office warned that the MoD’s plans were not subject to proper scrutiny and could lead to a waste of taxpayers’ money. Meanwhile, well-recruited regular units, including 2nd Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, have been disbanded.”
“The MoD should abandon these dangerous plans, and concentrate on rebuilding our Regular forces. Events abroad underline the importance of strong defence.”